When No. 7 Dulaney boys lacrosse coach Jake Reed decided to schedule a game against Urbana of Frederick County, he did it in hopes it would prepare his team for the type of opponents it would face in the late rounds of the state playoffs.
The Lions fell, 8-7, to the Hawks on April 26, but the experience was more important than the result.
"They're a very good team. This is great, playing the No. 1- ranked public school in the state," Reed said after the game. "That's how you get better, playing good teams. Hopefully, this will help us get ready for states."
It appears that scheduling the Hawks paid off. Dulaney will get the chance to avenge the defeat when it plays Urbana tonight at UMBC at 8 for the Class 4A-3A state title.
The Lions felt they didn't play up to their potential in the regular-season loss. Since then, they've been at the top of their game, winning seven straight, including two victories over No. 13 Catonsville, a win over rival Towson and a semifinal win over Wootton - the team that beat Dulaney in the semifinals last year. Even though the Lions have had tons of state championship success, they haven't won a title since 2005. The seniors on this season's team were just freshmen on junior varsity during that time.
"We know our ultimate goal is to win a state championship," midfielder Jay Mann said last week. "[For the seniors], we got to go out on a state championship and we got to win it."
Comets learn to lead -- One of the most difficult things for Catonsville's girls lacrosse team this season has been learning to play with a lead. The No. 15 Comets squandered some amazing advantages during the regular season, going up 10-1 on Towson only to lose, 15-14, and getting ahead 9-4 on Dulaney before falling, 12-11. In the playoffs, however, the Comets have been able to get ahead and stay there. In the regional final, they avenged the loss to then-No. 12 Dulaney, 19-10. In the state semifinal, they ran up a six-goal lead and Wootton never got closer than four as the Comets upset their previously unbeaten Montgomery County opponent, 11-6. At halftime, the Comets led 10-4, but first-year coach Dorothy Gill reminded her players that they had blown bigger leads than that. During the regular season, "we talked through the losses and the kids knew what they were doing," Gill said. The Comets (12-6) will go for the biggest upset of all tonight when they meet No. 2, defending champ and unbeaten Severna Park in the Class 4A-3A title game at 6.
Webster to try out for Junior National team -- St. Paul's junior Bailey Webster has been invited to try out for the USA Volleyball Women's Junior National Team this summer. The 6-foot-3 middle hitter, Maryland's 2007 Gatorade Player of the Year and a PrepVolleyball.com All-American, will train with 18 other girls July 8-19 at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif.
Previously unranked Baltimore County girls lacrosse teams to advance to the state finals - Catonsville, Loch Raven and Towson.
Consecutive wins to close out the season by the Beth Tfiloh baseball team. The Warriors won their first Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association C Conference title last week, defeating Sts. Peter & Paul, 7-3.